One of such is the Gadaa system of the Oromo People. . Hallpike, C. R., “ Review: The Origins of the Borana Gada System,” Reviewed. Oromo elites, Abba Gadaa (father of Gadaa), historians most often say that it is The Gada system is largely practised by the Oromo people. Was it a system used through out Oromia or was it prevalent in one region of Oromia The Gada system spread with the migration and intermingle of the Oromo.

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They also exchange these symbols. Sustainable Peace for Ethiopia and Eritrea: History It is difficult to tell when exactly Gadaa system began since is seens as an intrinsic element of the indigenous Oromo’s everyday lives and not an ‘institution’. While he was taking rest under the shade of Odaa sycamore tree instantly covered by cloud and mist Waaqaa God told him all laws and moral values to the innocent man of Walaabuu. Decisions over the use of common resources and the settlement of disputes are reached after thorough discussions and deliberation.

Is there any part of the Gada system that is not compatible with existing international human rights instruments or with the requirement of mutual respect among communities, groups and individuals, or with sustainable development? Historically, it has been seen as a better method of governing than other forms in the region. Any decision passed by the general assembly is final and cannot be reversed by any other assembly Asmerom The knowledge and practices of the Gada System have been transmitted from generation to generation in various ways.

Habeland also argued that Oromo’s culture is archaic and extremely simple. Every citizen has the right to speak and be heard in the Assembly of multitudes.

There are several inter-generational rules of the Oromo society under the Gada system of which the basic rule is the position of a man on the Gada cycle is always five grades forty years ahead of the grade of his son. By Daniel Berhane on Thursday, December 1, 5: In fact, many scholars have given various explanations of Gadaa System. The Oromo recognized the Gada System as part of their cultural heritage and as a contemporary system of governance that functions in concert with the modern state system.


Problems and Purpose Discourses around the origin of democracy contain a clear binary separation between “us” and “them” which over-simplifies the complex historical evolution of political systems. Both social groups pass from one stage of development to the next every eight years.

Gadaa – Wikipedia

Geographical location and range of the Gada system. Baxter and Uri Almagor eds. Whereas, among the Borana-Oromo, the general assembly takes place once in eight in the middle of the term of office of a leader.

This second one has little to do with age where as the first has nothing to do with genealogical ties. Oroomo they enter the Gada period or before they come to power they have to prove their capacity in military activities. Those elected young Gada councilors and other members of the class in their twenties and early thirties marry at this stage.

Other shortcomings include rigidity of rules, and the question of scaling Gadaa to millions of people. However, Tsegaye did not clearly explain how the Cushitics initially came to derive the laws and use it in the administration.

Gada is organized into five classes with one of these functioning as the ruling class consisting of a chairperson, officials and an assembly. Still among various Oromo groups Qaalluu is believed to be the eldest son of Oromo and therefore given the title of father.

The Oromo People and Oromia — brief. Accessed in July, The transition into this final grade is formally take place by rite of incense exchange Qumbi wal irraa fuudhuu Abbaa Gadaas at Gadaa Ceremony One generation in Oromo covers 40 years of the life cycle. The assembly discusses cases of high degree, making law legislationreviewing the existing laws, assesses if there is decline in law and careless violation of the law.

Major Oromo clans have established the centres of their Gada at several places based on their territorial settlement. Kallachaa is a highly respected material and considered as cursing object possessed by the first born among the clans.

In addition to his Harvard PhD dissertation, Legesse has published a book [3] positioning Gadaa as an African democracy that could inform constitutional thinkers.

The Oromo Nation is the community concerned with the Gada system. A number of scholars have studied Gadaa.


The major activity of the Gada Assembly can be described as legislative. It is the stage of the incoming of Gada leaders who were elected during transition to grade IV, 16 years ago.


As ofGadaa had active adherents only among the Borana and Guji groups near syste Ethiopian-Kenyan border. Abbaa muudaa deals with the Gadaa System and offices are hereditary. By using this site, kromo agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Gada is the traditional social stratification system of Oromos in Ethiopia and northern Kenya ; it is also practiced by the Konso and Gedeo people of southern Ethiopia.

Other principles of the system include balanced representation of all clans, lineages, regions and confederacies, accountability of leaders, the settlement of disputes through reconciliation, and the respect for basic rights and liberties. Oormo principal responsibilities of the initiates or the? All activities and life of each and every member of the Oromo was guided by an egalitarian socio- economic and political structure of the society called the Gada system.

Another one of the distinctive features pointed out is the testing period of elected leaders. Then the chance will be his. Gada assemblies, power transfer ceremonies and transition rites took place at these cultural spaces under Oda sycamore tree which is regarded as the symbol of the Gada System. Today, the sycamore tree is a symbolic representation of wystem and consensus, where the local community comes together to make new rules and resolve disputes Sirna The Yuba take part in Gada Assembly and indeed have some residual political power in the Assembly.

Views Read Edit View history. Gada Assembly is an ultimate authority. Oromo horsemanship is a highly prized aspect of their culture and it had a great deal to do with their military success over the centuries.

Knowledge about the Gada system is transmitted to children in the home and at school. Webarchive template wayback links All articles oomo unsourced statements Articles with unsourced statements from January Retrieved from ” https: